Abdominal Pain in Hattiesburg, MS
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What is abdominal pain?
Patients often have difficulty characterizing abdominal pain. It can be described as lower abdominal pain, pain in the upper abdomen, upper stomach pain, generalized pain in the stomach, etc. Abdominal pain can present as any manner of discomfort between the pelvis and the chest. It may be vague and difficult to explain. A lot of the time, pain in your abdomen can be a small issue, but it is important to pay attention to your body and the signals that it is sending you. There may be a multitude of possible conditions or contributing factors causing your stomach pain. If you have had frequent off-and-on stomach problems, it might be time to meet with a doctor who provides care for abdominal pain in Hattiesburg, MS. You can request a consultation with a GI physician in your area by calling Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC.
What causes abdominal pain?
Stomach or abdominal pain could be due to quite a few benign concerns. These often include:
- Sickness from food: A foodborne illness due to toxins in food from bacteria, viruses, and parasites. Symptoms include nausea and vomiting.
- Difficulty passing hard stool
- An excess of gas
- A potential stomach virus: This could be a stomach flu or other virus.
- Indigestion (dyspepsia)
- Irritable bowel syndrome: Pain often occurs presents in the lower abdomen but can be in any part of the abdomen. Pain may intensify soon after eating.
- Food allergies (such as gluten intolerance or lactose intolerance). Common food allergies include nuts, shellfish, fish, milk, and eggs.
Additional and potentially more serious conditions that cause abdominal pain involve:
- Ulcerative colitis: IBS that can manifest in abdominal and rectal cramping and pain.
- Kidney stones (nephrolithiasis): Symptoms manifest as extreme pain in the back and side from the lower abdomen to the groin.
- Stomach cancer: Symptoms may include pain and unusual "fullness" in the upper abdomen.
- Bowel obstruction or blockage: Inability of digested waste to pass through the bowel.
- Decreased blood supply to the intestines (intestinal ischemia): This might be the result of a blocked blood vessel and could affect intestinal function.
- Crohn's disease: An inflammatory disease of the intestines that presents with frequent diarrhea and abdominal pain.
- Pancreatitis: Inflammation of the pancreas. Pain is felt from the upper abdomen radiating to the back.
- Diverticulitis: Infection/swelling of the colon. This may progress to bowel obstruction and abdominal inflammation.
- GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease): Occurs when stomach acid pushes back into the esophagus. Symptoms may include recurring heartburn.
- Cholecystitis: Inflammation of the gallbladder that can present as severe pain in the center or upper right of the abdomen.
- Colon cancer: Symptoms may include extreme and persistent abdominal pain as well as a change in bowel habits.
- Appendicitis: Swelling of the appendix. This could feel like a dull pain in the abdomen that transfers to the lower right abdomen and becomes sharper.
- Ulcers: Wounds in the lining of the stomach that can present with pain in the abdomen.
What are some causes of lower abdominal pain?
Sometimes, pain can be isolated to the lower portion of the abdomen. Some common causes of pain in the lower abdomen include:
- Bowel blockage: The complete halt of digested material from passing through the bowel.
- Appendicitis: Swelling of the appendix. This can feel like a dull pain in the abdomen that travels to the lower right abdomen and grows sharper/intensifies.
- Constipation: Difficulty passing and/or the inability to pass stool.
- Gas: Feels like pressure in the abdomen and can include flatulence and burping.
- Lactose intolerance: The adverse reaction to lactose (found in dairy) due to an inability to digest it.
- IBS (Irritable bowel syndrome): Common disorder affecting the colon.
- Celiac disease (celiac sprue): Adverse reaction to gluten, which can be found in rye, wheat, and barley.
- Flu (stomach flu): Infection of the intestines. Might present with cramping, nausea, and fever.
- Indigestion: Pain resulting from indigestion in the lower abdomen is unusual and a result of the buildup of acid following eating.
- Irritable bowel disorder (Ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease): A term describing any chronic swelling in the digestive tract.
- Diverticulitis: Swelling or infection of the walls of the intestines.
- Hernia: When a body part or organ forces its way into the abdominal wall.
When should I go to the hospital for abdominal pain?
If you or a loved one are suffering from extreme, unceasing abdominal pain in tandem with any of the below-listed issues, emergency treatment might be needed. Abdominal pain should be treated by an emergency physician without delay if:
- Pain travels from the stomach to your back
- Your stomach is unusually tender to the touch
- Your abdominal pain is accompanied by a fever
- You experience bloody stool or bloody urine
- You have trouble breathing or pain in your chest
- You are unable to eat without vomiting
- You are vomiting blood
- You have an atypical heartbeat
The best guideline is that it is better to be safe than sorry. If your stomach pain is frequent and not extreme, meeting with your nearest gastrointestinal doctor might still be advisable. Our talented specialists routinely provide treatment for patients with abdominal pain in Hattiesburg, MS and can help you with your gastrointestinal symptoms. Blood in your stool should never be ignored and should be assessed by a medical practitioner. Should you have blood in your stool, please contact Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC immediately.
Treatment for abdominal pain
Because it can stem from so many possible causes, the most reliable and efficient way to treat abdominal pain is to seek a diagnosis from a gastroenterologist. The physician-led group of gastroenterologists at Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC strives to bring the highest quality, patient-centered service. As leaders in gastrointestinal health, our doctors are able to conduct a range of diagnostic tests and give treatment for a great number of conditions that are responsible for abdominal pain. To get in touch with a specialist who can provide treatment for abdominal pain in Hattiesburg, MS, please call one of our facilities without delay to schedule a meeting.
The staff there were very friendly. Didn't have to wait a long time to see the Dr. I have been there before so decided to go back to them again for my procedure because I like the service they give.
I went to Hattiesburg GI for a 2nd opinion after suffering with numerous GI issues for 30+years since childhood. I saw Erin the nurse practitioner who immediately made me feel super comfortable. She was so nice and did not make me feel rushed and took time to actually listen to me and didn't make me feel like "just another patient" but somebody who mattered and that she really wanted to help. The Dr. I had been seeing since relocating to MS nearly 2yrs ago is nice but my chronic Illnesses and many GI conditions are difficult to treat and often many things do not always work which can be very frustrating for Dr.'s. I think many times they forget how frustrating it is for the person living each day with all of the illnesses. Erin came up with a plan right away and even mentioned something that had never been discussed with me in the over 30+ years that I've been sick each day. I was so excited leaving their office and finally had hope that maybe this would work and grateful that I'd been listend to by someone who was genuinely friendly and not fake nice. I will be happily calling this my new GI Dr. Office! 🙂
Dr. Fox and his staff are amazing! I have had several procedures at Hattiesburg GI Associates and they are always very professional and compassionate.
Hattiesburg GI Associate Dr Marrissette and staff are very passionate in their profession (ministry) and I always receive excellent care.
Have complete confidence in Dr Fox. He has not only seen me over the years but my husband, mother, grandmother, aunts, and uncles. Will continue to see him in the future. Thanks so much for such wonderful care of your patients!